‘Call Jane’ | Sundance 2022 Review

Directed By:

Phyllis Nagy

Written By:

Hayley Schore, Roshan Sethi


Elizabeth Banks, Sigourney Weaver, Chris Messina, Kate Mara, Wunmi Mosaku, Cory Michael Smith


Adventure, Drama

The film takes place in Chicago, 1968. Joy is pregnant and her and her husband are given terrible news that leads to them having to consider an abortion for the health of Joy. After receiving no help from any of the doctors, Joy seeks alternatives which leads her to a shady doctor who can perform the termination.

After learning more about the women involved in this underground Planned Parenthood, Joy decides to take up the cause, and assist in women getting the treatment they are seeking, In this drama about women and their rights, but perhaps done in a tone that may feel callous.

Firstly Elizabeth Banks gives one of her most solid performances of her career. Her character is consistently conflicted about the road she is inevitably on. Sigourney Weaver also gives a formidable performance and the two together have great chemistry. The story does try to shine a light on how needed treatment centers are and how important Planned Parenthood is for women’s health. It’s surface level in many points, but I think that’s intentional to try and bring in audiences that may not be engaged with it if it came down to heavy handed or explicit.

At the end of the day, I have no idea how this film comes across to women who have had abortions, been involved with any Planned Parenthood treatments, or the like thereof. I would want to seek out the reviews of those voices more than mine. What I CAN say is the films tone can sometimes feel a little too bright for the subject matter we are involved in.

Overall though, I think ‘Call Jane’ is worth checking out for the performances and the conversations it poses to its audience, surface level or not. It’s still taking women’s rights seriously and those rights keep getting reduced and that has to stop. If a movie that doesn’t delve as deep as others would like can at least put an opposing idea into the heart of someone against women’s rights, the world will be that little bit better in my opinion, while still being entertained.

Rating: 7 out of 10.
Patrick Beatty
Patrick Beatty

Patrick Beatty is a film critic and creator of PatrickBeattyReviews.com and the Gaggle of Geeks Podcast network. Watch him Friday’s on ABC4 Good Things Utah talk about movies and follow all his work in the link below.

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